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Astronomy Outreach

Welcome To The Mike's Camera Astronomy News Service!

As a member of the AstronomyOutreach network Mike's Camera and its trained and certified staff of telescope experts is pleased to offer the latest in astronomy and space news and outreach!


First Images from Huygens Probe on Titan

This is one of the first raw images returned by the ESA Huygens probe during its successful descent. It was taken from an altitude of 16.2 kilometres with a resolution of approximately 40 metres per pixel. It apparently shows short, stubby drainage channels leading to a shoreline... more from NASA/JPL


Remembering Mariner 4

Mariner 4 gave scientists their first glimpse of Mars at close range, passing over the planet at an altitude of 9,846 kilometers (6,118 miles) above the surface and putting to rest the myths of the late 19th century that the planet may have harbored an advanced civilization. Launched on November 28, 1964, Mariner 4 carried a television camera and six other science instruments to study interplanetary space between the orbits of Earth and Mars and in the vicinity of Mars itself... more from JPL


M42 With The Meade SN-8

Noted astrophotographer and minor planet specialist James McGaha submitted this spectacular image of the Orion Nebula. The image was made through a Meade SN-8 Schmidt-Newtonian telescope, delivering coma-free stars across a very wide field of view...

more from Meade


NASA's Great Observatories Provide a Detailed View of Kepler's Supernova Remnant

NASA's three Great Observatories -- the Hubble Space Telescope, the Spitzer Space Telescope, and the Chandra X-ray Observatory -- joined forces to probe the expanding remains of a supernova. The combined image unveils a bubble-shaped shroud of gas and dust that is 14 light years wide and is expanding at 4 million miles per hour (2,000 kilometers per second). Observations from each telescope highlight distinct features of the supernova remnant, a fast-moving shell of iron-rich material from the exploded star, surrounded by an expanding shock wave that is sweeping up interstellar gas and dust... more from Chandra


Cassini Imagery Reveals Saturn's Immense Scale

Tiny Mimas is dwarfed by a huge white storm and dark waves on the edge of a cloud band in Saturn's atmosphere. Although the east-west winds on Saturn are stronger than on Earth or even Jupiter, the contrast in appearance between these zones is more muted, and the departures of the wind speeds from east to west are lower... more from NASA


NASA Begins Rehearsals for Return to Flight

"This is where we stop just brainstorming and thinking about how we're going to go fly this flight in space," said Paul Hill, lead flight director for Shuttle Mission STS-114, the first Shuttle flight since the Columbia accident... more from NASA


Submit DSI Images to Meade

Meade will be accepting images made with the new Deep Sky Imager to be reviewed by the Marketing Department for consideration of placement in Meade's catalog, ads, and website. Meade will give name credit for any images used. It's a great way for any enthusiast doing fine astophotographic work with Meade telescopes and the Deep Sky Imager to get worldwide recognition for their efforts... more from Meade 


Total Lunar Eclipse Tonight

At 9:14 p.m. EDT on October 27th (tonight), the Moon enters Earth's dark umbral shadow. Almost everyone in the Americas and Western Europe will have a beautiful view of this eclipse. The Moon will be positioned well up in a dark, evening sky as viewed from most of the United States and Canada... more from space.com


Cassini Captures Saturn's Active Atmosphere

Saturn's atmosphere displays elegant structural detail in this image of the southern polar region. Swirls, fingers of clouds and three subtle brighter spots are visible here as they race around the planet. A dark spot surrounded by concentric rings marks the south pole...

more from JPL/NASA


Profiles in Outreach: Neil Armstrong

It isn't very often that Neil Armstrong's feet are on the ground. But when they are, they are known for being the first step on the moon's surface. As spacecraft commander for Apollo II, the first manned lunar landing mission, Armstrong was the first man to land a craft on the moon. A true hero of our planet and our times, Neil Armstrong is available to speak at select engagements through The Nationwide Speakers Bureau... more


NASA's First Generation Of Astronauts And Walter Cronkite Named Ambassadors Of Exploration

During a special ceremony commemorating the 35th anniversary of human exploration of the Moon, Administrator Sean O'Keefe named NASA's first generation of astronauts and former CBS News anchor Walter Cronkite "Ambassadors of Exploration.". The award celebrates the realization of a vision for exploration first articulated by President John F. Kennedy in May 1961, when NASA's fledgling human space flight program had little more than 15 minutes of experience... more from JPL/NASA


Cassini Glimpses Mimas

Soon after orbital insertion, Cassini returned its best look yet at the heavily cratered moon Mimas (398 kilometers, 247 miles across). The enormous crater at the top of this image, named Herschel, is about 130 kilometers (80 miles) wide and 10 kilometers (6 miles) deep... more from JPL/NASA


NASA Celebrates the 35th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 Mission to the Moon

Thirty five years have passed since Armstrong and Aldrin first stepped on the Moon, and NASA is celebrating it's past with a vision of the future. The Vision for Space Exploration calls for a return to the moon, followed by journeys of discovery to Mars and beyond. There are many uncertainties on the road ahead, but there should be no doubt that NASA can set lofty goals and meet them... more from NASA


Famed Astronomy Popularizer, Sir Patrick Moore Recovers from Food Poisoning

Sir Patrick, 81, missed the programme he has presented continuously for the last 47 years on Sunday after being struck down with suspected food poisoning. It is the first programme he has missed since the series began - although the highly-respected presenter is expected to be back for August's edition... more from the BBC


Aurora Show for Friday Night at Table Mountain Star Party

Astrophotographer Scott Tucker captured this green aurora from the 2004 Table Mountain Star Party on Friday night. A huge response from the crowd of 700 could be heard across the entire star party field when the aurora switched on, which "looked like a curtain of moving green streamers across the north horizon". Aside from the northern lights, the night was perfect for deep sky observers with hundreds of telescopes turned to the sky...

Click for larger image from Scott Tucker


Profiles in Outreach: J. Kelly Beatty

Kelly Beatty joined the staff of Sky & Telescope in 1974 and now is the magazine's Executive Editor. He also serves as the editor of Night Sky, Sky Publishing's new magazine for beginning stargazers. Specializing in planetary science and space exploration, he writes many of the feature articles and news items found in Sky & Telescope, and he coordinates the "Focal Point" opinion page... more from Sky Publishing


Cassini Reveals Titan's Surface

In orbit around Saturn for only a few days, Cassini has already captured images of Saturn's giant moon Titan revealing never-before-seen details of the moon's surface. "Although the initial images appear bland and hard to interpret, we're happy to report that we have indeed seen Titan's surface with unprecedented clarity," says JPL's Dennis Matson, project scientist for the international Cassini-Huygens mission... more from JPL/NASA


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